Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Bitter and Sweet (05/28/09)
TITLE: The Afternoon Storm
By Judy Meyers
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Just a few short months ago, my brothers had plowed the fields that now lay before me. I watched them as they arose early in the morning, gobbled their breakfasts of eggs, sausage, biscuits and gravy, hot coffee and orange juice. My sisters and I would go to the barn, fetch the eggs, and milk the cows while my brothers made their way to the fields. For weeks, every year, we planned this time of the season for planting I kept remembering the scripture about Jesus going to the cross for the joy that was set before Him. Surely, this was not the same thing in comparison. His joy was much greater. But our bitter time of sowing would surely turn into a celebration when the harvesting began. These fields, newly planted, would give us much grain for our meals, feed for the livestock and market.
How could such a bitter time turn into a sweet experience if the weather produced the storm that was now overhead? My brothers cursed under their breath. They knew how difficult it had been to sow that seed. Now, in one swoop, the fields could lay empty of any provision or profit.
The rains came, the winds blew. I watched from the small window as hail pounded the fields outside. Tears filled my eyes. All of my family’s hard work was gone.
I looked in the eyes of my brothers. Searching each face, around the room, I looked for a glimmer of hope. There was no hope. “Might as well go into town tonight,” said one. “Nothing else to do.”
Just as quickly as the storm came, the sun began to shine. The sky was blue over the mud holes and the pounded wheat fields.
Emerging from the house, my older brothers and sisters were dressed and ready to go to the city. They didn’t mention going to their regular places of entertainment. They were going to church. “Good revival meetin’ is going on down at the church in town,” said one of my brothers. “We’re gonna go see what’s going on there. Hear they do some good singin’.”
Oh they did some good singing all right. That night changed the lives of all my brothers and sisters. Revival had come to our house. Had that storm been drawn away in another direction, my family would not have found the Lord. What had a bitter beginning, now had a sweet ending. My family had lost everything in that storm. There were no more crops to plow or harvest. The only thing they could do was go to the revival meetin’ every night.
Because of that storm, one of my brothers became a minister of the Gospel and the others became good deacons in the church. I would not have believed it if I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes.
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